Rory McIlroy grouped with Dustin Johnson and Hideki Matsuyama

He plays his first event after returning from injury

BY Simon Maguire 09:07 Wednesday 1 March 2017, 9:07 1 Mar 2017

Image: Kamran Jebreili AP/Press Association Images

Rory McIlroy has been grouped with world number one Dustin Johnson and Hideki Matsuyama as he prepares to make his comeback at the WGC-Mexico Championship on Thursday.

The Northern Irishman has been recovering from a rib injury over the past few weeks and will tee off competitively for the first time since he finished runner-up at the South African Open in January.

Other notable groups sees Honda Classic winner Rickie Fowler playing alongside Justin Thomas and Sergio Garcia while the trio of Henrik Stenson, Jordan Spieth and Adam Scott will tee off together.

Speaking to pgatour.com about his injury ahead of his return, Mcilroy said: "I’m still strapping it up and still being a little bit, not protective but careful. I’m making sure I’m really warmed up before going out to play, a little bit of kinesio tape there just to help support it. I’ve been working through the bag the last seven to 10 days and it feels really good.”

It will be his first start on the PGA Tour in four months and looking forward to his return he said: “It’s been a really great group of guys that have won the last few weeks and it’s been a little bit tough for me, even though most of those guys are my friends, it’s tough to be sitting at home watching those guys doing what they’re doing when you can’t get out here.”

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